Read e-book online Basic Word Order (RLE Linguistics B: Grammar): Functional PDF

By Russell S Tomlin

ISBN-10: 0415723574

ISBN-13: 9780415723572

ISBN-10: 1138964425

ISBN-13: 9781138964426

This ebook examines the frequencies of the six attainable easy notice (or constituent) orders (SOV, SVO, VSO, VOS, OSV, OVS) presents a typologically grounded reason behind these frequencies by way of 3 autonomous, practical rules of linguistic organization.


From a database of approximately 1,000 languages and their simple constituent orders, a pattern of four hundred languages was once produced that's statistically consultant of either the genetic and areal distributions of the world’s languages. This pattern finds the subsequent relative frequencies (in order from excessive to low) of simple constituent order varieties: (1) SOV and SVO, (2) VSO, (3) VOS and OVS, (4) OSV.


It is argued that those relative frequencies should be defined to be the results of the prospective interactions of 3 basic sensible rules of linguistic association. precept 1, the thematic details principle, specifies that preliminary place is the cross-linguistically favoured place for clause-level thematic info. precept 2, the verb-object bonding principle, describes the cross-linguistic tendency for a transitive verb and its item to shape a extra tightly built-in unit, syntactically and semantically, than does a transitive verb and its topic. precept three, the animated principle, describes the cross-linguistic tendency for semantic arguments that are both extra animate or extra agentive to happen previous within the clause. each one precept is inspired independently of the others, drawing on cross-linguistic info from greater than eighty genetically and typologically assorted languages.


Given those 3 independently stimulated useful ideas, it really is argued that the relative frequency of easy constituent order kinds is because of the tendency for the 3 rules to be maximally learned within the world’s languages. SOV and SVO languages are typologically such a lot widespread simply because such uncomplicated orders replicate all 3 rules. the rest orders ensue much less often simply because they replicate fewer of the principles.


The 1,000-language database and the genetic and areal type frames are released as appendices to the volume.

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Basic Word Order (RLE Linguistics B: Grammar): Functional Principles (Routledge Library Editions: Linguistics) by Russell S Tomlin


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